Said and Read
Words fascinate me. Their origins, their meanings, their evolution — all of that interests me, and has for as long as I can remember. Words are the building blocks of thought, and the pathway to other minds. They give us a way to externalize the complex and ephemeral thoughts and feelings that make each of us unique in the history and future of the world. In this blog, I’ll share my exploration of (and enthusiasm for) words, language, and communication. I’ll try for a good mix in trivia, tips, and observations.
Hope for Humanity Despite AI
May 6, 2023 | Read It Somewhere
Generative AI may reduce our need to think for ourselves, but there will always be people who do things the hard way – and that gives me hope.
On Writing What You Know
Feb 11, 2023 | Writing
If all writers took “write what you know” literally, would there be anything but autobiographical writing in the library?
Cold Weather Words
Jan 7, 2023 | Word Matters
Weather words are among the oldest in English, because weather is one of humanity’s oldest conversation topics.
A Natural Name
Dec 10, 2022 | Writing
Names are labels that help us keep track. In fiction, keeping identities clear when names can shift based on relationships is a challenge.
Real Life is Crowded
Nov 6, 2022 | Read It Somewhere, Writing
Keeping track of a large cast of characters in fiction can be a challenge, but there’s a really good reason why sometimes it’s worth the work.
Punctuation Marks & Traffic Signs
Oct 7, 2022 | Word Matters
I’ve been in the car a lot lately. In fact, almost all of my writing time has been spent driving. I always hope that those hours in the car could be good thinking time for fiction planning, but they just aren’t. Deep thinking and hurtling along a road at seventy miles...
A Word for Home
Sep 4, 2022 | Word Matters
House, home, dwelling, residence… I’ve been thinking about the nuances of these words and why the distinctions matter.
The Story Begins at Midnight
Aug 9, 2022 | Writing
Beginnings and endings are important inflection points in stories and in life, but the significance depends on context and perspective.
Writer or Organized Squirrel?
Jul 10, 2022 | Writing
False starts are part of my creative process, and they sometimes generate material I wish I could use. The trick is keeping track of where I saved those unused possibilities.
The Dreaded Blank Page
Jun 10, 2022 | Communications, Writing
Not knowing how to begin is no excuse for writerly procrastination. Here are two of my favorite ways to get myself unstuck.